• A Robin Kasparik film

    based on Stephen King’s short story

I returned to the ship, took my spacesuit off — and I was horrified.

Everyone’s afraid that I might infect them.

They say they’d let me out when it stops.

But I feel that this is just the beginning.

Stephen King

A few years ago, I read a rather uncanny title, Stephen King's short story: I Am the Doorway. The hypnotic atmosphere of sci‑fi horror about an astronaut infected with an alien virus was so captivating that I immediately felt the urge to adapt it into a film.

It was a crazy idea. I had no money, contacts or experience, but I started anyway. I wanted to make my dream come true. So, I wrote to Stephen King asking for his permission to shoot the story as a short film and he said yes. I was beside myself with joy.

But, there is a catch; the film can't earn a single cent.

Partners

Happily, I started to raise money for the shoot, but hit a wall. No one wants to sponsor a film that won't earn anything. As Morpheus says in The Matrix: „Welcome to the real world“.

I realized I had to find enthusiasts who weren't into money, who would support a meaningful thing instead. I looked for two years and found wonderful people who were willing to help me.

I have raised only a fraction of a typical film budget, but started to prepare to shoot the film anyway. And I was not willing to make any compromises.

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Fulldome

In the meantime, the world has seen the birth of revolutionary fulldome technology, making it possible to project films onto giant planetarium domes. The nearest one was in Germany. So I set off on a journey to Jena, and was astonished.

Can you recall your first time at a planetarium with the starry sky above your head? Breathtaking. Now, imagine watching a film, with surround sound, like that! A completely different experience compared to conventional cinema. This would be perfect for my film.

They explained to me at the planetarium how they create astronomy shows for fulldome, but no one knew how you would shoot a sci-fi horror film like that. I decided to figure it out. And then a gift from the heavens arrived. The first Czech fulldome was built in Brno Planetarium. Right behind my house.

Team

Orson Welles, my favorite director, said: “A writer needs a pen, an artist needs a brush, but a filmmaker needs an army.”

That’s exactly what I needed. I started to look for the right people from all around the world, until I found them all. From a French cameraman and an Indian focus puller to a Hollywood VFX director.

We all started the project knowing we wouldn’t receive any payment. But our motivation was much stronger. We were enthusiastic and ready to show what we could do. A film army, with a real battle awaiting us.

Shooting

I decided to shoot the film directly from the astronaut’s point of view, so that the viewers would see everything through his eyes. That’s why I cast a mime artist, Radim Vizváry, who is apt at expressing a whole range of emotions only with his hands. Because the hands will be the only thing you’ll see from the main character’s perspective.

We built spaceship sets, mounted a camera on Radim and started rolling. We shot the entire film twice. First for the conventional cinema and then for fulldome. What a horror that was. Filming with a special lens was so challenging that we progressed with the speed of a sequence a day, often ending at four o’ clock in the morning.

Though the film will be only twenty minutes long, each minute took maximum effort. We were exhausted, but happy. Because we were doing what we loved.

Director’s journal

I work every day with my team on bringing the film closer to a release date.
Follow us for behind-the-scenes updates.

0%
Of the film
is finished
  • August 2016

    The poster is here

    In the days before Photoshop, film posters were created by talented painters wielding brushes rather than the mouse-and-monitor combo. They would stand...

  • January 2016

    We are proceeding to the next level

    A few weeks ago, I have completed the final editing of the film I AM THE DOORWAY and naively thought that the most turbulent stage of creation was behind me. With great optimism, I decided ...

  • August 2015

    French Connection

    I had been looking for a cinematographer for a long time. But eventually I found him - in the lunch queue. It happened during the filming...

  • June 2015

    Hardcore shooting

    Stephen King gave us permission to shoot his story and make it in a way that will make it a story to tell our grandchildren. We cast a...

ROBIN KASPARIK

I'm a film director and movies are magic to me. As a child, I watched everything from Chaplin to Lynch, and dreamt that one day I would make a great movie. I studied directing, but I found the real film school on the sets of movies directed by Roman Polanski, Eric Valette and Juraj Herz.

I used everything I learned when directing my short film Séance, which was later selected for film festivals all over the world. It was at one of these events that I learned about the opportunity to film a short story by Stephen King. And at the moment, "I Am the Doorway" is nearly finished, and I am hoping to fund the last steps of my dream project.

Will you be part of that? Write me at robinkasparik@gmail.com

Follow the film’s final steps on Facebook